112 killed in fire at Bangladesh garment factory

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Associated Press

Posted on November 25, 2012 at 6:03 PM

Updated Sunday, Nov 25 at 6:04 PM

DHAKA, Bangladesh (AP) — An official in Bangladesh says many of the people who died in a fire that raced through a garment factory late Saturday were trapped by the flames because the eight-story building lacked emergency exits.

At least 112 people were killed in the blaze.

The factory is just outside Bangladesh's capital of Dhaka. It's operated by Tazreen Fashions Ltd., a subsidiary of the Tuba Group, which makes products for Wal-Mart and other companies in the U.S. and Europe.

There's word that the factory had been given a "high risk" safety rating last year. A Wal-Mart spokesman says online documents indicate the factory received a "high risk" assessment after a May 2011 inspection and a "medium risk" report after an inspection in August 2011.

Bangladesh has some 4,000 garment factories, many without proper safety measures. The country annually earns about $20 billion from exports of garment products, mainly to the U.S. and Europe.

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